The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) will conduct five hearings in January to accept public testimony on proposed changes to educator licensing rules (PI 34). In addition to the hearings, a public comment period is open until Jan. 31 with written comments on the proposed permanent rules given the same consideration as public testimony. The nearest hearing date is Jan. 16, 4 to 6 pm — St. Norbert College, Mulva Library, Room 101, 400 Third Street, De Pere.
The proposed permanent rules will make changes in educator licensing to address teacher shortages and implement new statutory language as a result of the 2017-19 biennial budget (2017 Wisconsin Act 59). The proposed permanent rules:
- Update, clarify and make consistent the program approval process for both traditional and alternative route programs.
- Simplify the licensing process. The new rules create a tiered approach to educator licensing, which will allow educators to obtain a license fitting their unique training and experience.
- Consolidate subject areas. The new rules will provide districts more flexibility in staffing their schools by preparing and licensing educators to teach entire subject areas rather than just specialized subjects.
- Add flexibility. The new rules allow highly qualified license holders to add license areas, giving them access to new opportunities and helping school districts fill high demand assignments.
- Make the educator misconduct process fairer and more efficient, effective and transparent. The new rules provide the DPI with additional tools to address educator misconduct, including license suspensions and reprimands. The new rules also add transparency by requiring the department to post final decisions in all misconduct cases, giving schools and parents additional information.
- Create clarity. The new rules use standardized, simplified language and structure to make the rules clearer, more understandable, and shorter.
Written comments may be submitted via the department’s form for submitting public comment, goo.gl/forms/DnTvOXf6LW3vMAVt2. Questions or additional testimony may be sent to Carl Bryan, Budget and Policy Analyst and Administrative Rules Coordinator, 608.267.9127, [email protected], 125 South Webster Street, PO Box 7841, Madison, WI 53707-7841. The proposed administrative rules and supporting documents are available for review on the department’s Proposed PI 34 Licensure Rules webpage, dpi.wi.gov/policy-budget/administrative-rules/pi-34, or the Wisconsin Legislature’s Clearinghouse Rules site, docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/code/chr/all/cr_17_093.